Drug racket: Police arrest party organiser

Updated - December 21, 2020 07:41 pm IST

Published - December 21, 2020 07:40 pm IST - Bengaluru

The Central Crime Branch police, which has stepped up its probe in the drug racket with links to the Kannada film industry, arrested one of the 12 accused named in the case on Monday. According to officials, Vinay Kumar, who had been absconding for the past few months after he was named in the FIR, allegedly organised parties at well-known hotels in the city where he sold drugs.

“He did this at the behest of a key accused party organiser and socialite, Viren Khanna, whose bail application was recently rejected. Other accused in the case, including actress Ragini Dwivedi and second division clerk Ravishankar attended these parties,” said a senior CCB official.

Soon after Vinay Kumar’s name cropped up, he went on the run and applied for anticipatory bail. However, the court dismissed his bail petition. A CCB team, acting on a tip-off, arrested him in Goraguntepalya where he had come to meet his friends to seek help.

Sandeep Patil, Joint Commissioner of Police, said, “He has been taken into custody to ascertain his drug network and also his whereabouts while he was on the run. We are also probing those who helped him evade arrest all this while.”

Many of the accused in the case are socialites and actors who allegedly attended high-profile parties where drugs such as ecstasy, LSD and marijuana were sold.

Prime accused remain absconding

The prime accused still remain elusive, including party organiser Sheikh Fazil and Aditya Alva, the son of the late Minister Jeevaraj Alva and brother-in-law of Bollywood actor Vivek Oberoi. As part of their search, the police had raided Vivek Oberoi’s residence in Mumbai and summoned Alva’s sister Priyanka who is married to the actor for questioning.

They had also questioned Rickey Rai — the son of the former underworld don-turned-social activist late Muthappa Rai — and searched his apartment in Sadashivnagar and the family house in Bidadi as they believed that Alva was hiding there. So far, however, they are yet to track him down.

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